With a weather forecast of the usual howling gales and raining cats and dogs ringing in my ears the plane - a dreadful vibrating propeller thingy - set out from Brum airport in the pouring rain last Saturday. I fully expected that weather to stay with me all weekend. (I'm such a pessimist) but glory be - once we'd climbed through the grey clouds to 19,000ft sunshine was with us all the way. On the gradual descent I was able to see down to the odd coaster or fishing boat suggesting our plane had actually flown OVER the worst of it. Could this be possible? Could Shefali Oza (BBC Midland TV weather lady) have got it wrong... Well no, as a matter of fact the Island was in the calm centre of bad weather.
Out with the snap camera then and after collecting a hire car at Ronaldsway it was down the road to Castletown station for the first two train passes of the day. I was seeing RED all day though as both No 4 & No 12 were gleaming in their shiny clean paintwork.
A visit was then made to Peel for an excellent hot kipper bap on the breakwater and we were off to Laxey. After a stroll along the prom I walked up to Lady Evelyn (perhaps only the locals know who she is) and ventured over to the Laxey Mines Railway shed to see the team preparing Ant & Bee. What a friendly bunch they were and they even posed for a photo! I remembered to say "Smile" this time. Photos still to be worked on. Then a quick visit to see Lady Isabella and a first - but certainly not the last - visit to a new bistro/cafe adjacent to the car park near the big wheel. ----to be continued-----